BitFunder Founder Charged by SEC for Stealing $61 Million Worth of BTC 792

Today, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) brought charges against Jon E. Montroll and his exchange BitFunder for operating an unregistered securities exchange and defrauding users. On top of that, the agency also charged the operator — Montroll — with making false and misleading statements in connection with an unregistered offering of securities. BitFunder was a platform that permitted users to buy and sell virtual “shares” of various digital currency-related enterprises in exchange for Bitcoin.

“We allege that BitFunder operated unlawfully as an unregistered securities exchange.  Platforms that engage in the activity of a national securities exchange, regardless of whether that activity involves digital assets, tokens, or coins, must register with the SEC or operate pursuant to an exemption.  We will continue to focus on these types of platforms to protect investors and ensure compliance with the securities laws,” said Marc Berger, Director of the SEC’s New York Regional Office.

The SEC’s complaint, filed in federal district court in Manhattan, charges Montroll and BitFunder with violations of the anti-fraud and registration provisions of the federal securities laws. The complaint seeks permanent injunctions and disgorgement plus interest and penalties. 

The agency alleges Montroll operated BitFunder as an unregistered online securities exchange and defrauded exchange users by misappropriating their Bitcoin, and also for failing to disclose a cyberattack on BitFunder’s system that resulted in the theft of more than 6,000 Bitcoin. Going off the price of Bitcoin today, that’s about $61,800,000.

“As alleged in the complaint, Montroll defrauded exchange users by misappropriating their bitcoins and failing to disclose a cyberattack on the exchange’s system and the resulting bitcoin theft.  We will continue to vigorously police conduct involving distributed ledger technology and ensure that bad actors who commit fraud in this space are held accountable,” said Lara S. Mehraban, Associate Regional Director of the SEC’s New York Regional Office.

Unfortunately for Montroll, his legal troubles don’t stop with the SEC: Also today, in a parallel criminal case, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York filed a complaint against him for perjury and obstruction of justice during the SEC’s investigation. This implies that Montroll, in some way, must have not fully cooperated with the SEC during the agency’s investigation.

This case comes as the SEC is cracking down on other companies and individuals it believes are partaking in shady business within the crypto-space. In January of this year, the agency advised people to “exercise caution” with Bitcoin and other digital currencies.

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Cwallet and Microcosm Labs Forge Strategic Alliance to Elevate the TON Ecosystem 2786

In the aftermath of Bitcoin’s latest halving event, the TON ecosystem has witnessed a remarkable surge, highlighted by its participation in the 2024 Token2049 event in Dubai. Riding this wave of enthusiasm, Cwallet, one of the earliest wallets to support the TON blockchain, is at the forefront of harnessing the potential unleashed by this burgeoning technology.

Cwallet has strategically positioned itself to take advantage of the explosive growth of the blockchain by being an early adopter of TON. As an early supporter of TON, Cwallet integrated with the TON chain early on and now supports over 50 blockchain networks and more than 800 cryptocurrencies. This strategic move is part of Cwallet’s broader initiative to align with TON’s mass adoption vision and enhance its product offerings to fully leverage the advantages of this advanced blockchain technology. Cwallet’s security, practicality, and various convenient features can bring more innovative and exciting opportunities to the TON ecosystem.

In a significant step to strengthen its role within the TON ecosystem, Cwallet has announced a partnership with Microcosm Labs, a prominent incubator known for spearheading developments within the TON landscape. This partnership not only brings substantial investment from Microcosm Labs into Cwallet but also enhances the technical and operational capabilities of Cwallet, driving forward both entities’ ambitions to scale blockchain technology.

Building on this momentum, Cwallet has received the “Move to TON Grants” from Microcosm Labs. The purpose of these grants is to enrich the TON ecosystem by attracting more high-quality applications and interesting tools to join the TON network. Through the “Move to TON Grants,” Cwallet aims to provide more incentives for its users.

Amid these developments, Cwallet introduces the Lucky Box feature to enhance user engagement and rewards. The Lucky Box will distribute UP tokens from Microcosm Labs’ TONUP project, offering users more diverse and substantial rewards. This feature exemplifies Cwallet’s commitment to making cryptocurrency transactions secure, efficient, and enjoyable.

Looking ahead, Cwallet plans to use the “Move to TON Grants” for future product updates and exciting new activities, further strengthening its collaboration with Microcosm Labs. These efforts will enrich the entire TON blockchain ecosystem.

These strategic moves underscore Cwallet’s commitment to leading the cryptocurrency space with innovative solutions that meet current demands and anticipate future trends.

About Cwallet:

Cwallet is a leading crypto wallet offering secure, fast, and flexible solutions for all your crypto needs. Supporting over 800 cryptocurrencies and more than 50 blockchain networks, Cwallet is the preferred choice for millions of users worldwide. Our platform combines custodial and non-custodial wallets, offering the best blend of security and convenience. At Cwallet, we’re dedicated to simplifying the cryptocurrency world and delivering an exceptional experience to our users.

Meet TON-Margined trading at Storm Trade 3475

Storm Trade is the first decentralised derivatives trading platform on Telegram, built on the TON blockchain and allowing trading with leverage up to x50. Keeping up with the times and providing all the best technologies to its users, Storm is releasing a major update – TON-Margin, which will change the way you trade!

What is TON-Margin?

Many perpetual platforms, including Storm Trade, typically trade in stablecoins. However, TON-Margin opens the door to trading using TON as collateral. This gives traders more flexibility, variety and the ability to profit from even small price changes. And of course it brings the TON blockchain closer to true mass-adoption.

Since January 2024, 2 trading pairs to TON have been available on Storm Trade: TON/USD-CM and 1mNOT-F/TON, which showed great popularity among the exchange’s traders. Today, 10 trading pairs to TON are available on Storm Trade, and TON/USD-CM remains the most popular of them.

TON-M provides new opportunities, combining both risks and benefits. The main advantages of futures with TON to provide are:

  • Choice of asset to trade and expanded trading opportunities,
  • The ability to trade without selling TON for stablecoins,
  • Non-linear payout structure and increased profits even on small price movements,
  • Hedging of risk even in a falling market.

The main disadvantage of futures with TON in collateral is the rapid reduction of collateral when volatility is high.

The emergence of TON as collateral and the opening of new trading pairs is a great event for the entire TON ecosystem because it opens up almost limitless earning opportunities for holders, stakers and TON traders.

TON-Margined futures are an excellent tool for increasing trading income, protecting against losses in a falling market and diversifying your trading strategies. Trading only TON, on the TON blockchain, and using TON as a commission payment, on par with listing Notcoin on major exchanges, makes TON fully ready for the wave of new users that should inevitably happen in the near future.

Don’t forget about risk management, trade with an amount of funds that is convenient for you, learn new things and expand your trading experience with Storm Trade!

Fluid Tokens Launch First Dex for Runes 3736

FluidTokens is proud to pioneer the first decentralized exchange (DEX) tailored specifically for Runes.

FluidTokens, a Swiss-based company, is at the forefront of transforming traditional finance through permissionless DeFi solutions. With a focus on UTXO blockchains like Bitcoin and Cardano, FluidTokens offers a diverse range of innovative financial services that empower users to leverage their assets securely and transparently.

The Runes Protocol, conceived by Casey Rodarmor, the visionary behind Ordinals, represents a significant leap forward in the Bitcoin ecosystem. Runes made their market debut on April 20, coinciding with the Bitcoin halving. The launch sparked a frenzy among investors, leading to a surge in transaction fees and record-breaking earnings for Bitcoin miners, surpassing $107 million in costs within the first week alone.

The Runes Protocol allows users to create and trade meme coins on the Bitcoin blockchain, offering alternatives to both Ordinals and the BRC-20 protocol.

FluidTokens’ DEX for Runes opens up new avenues for liquidity and trading within the Runes ecosystem, fostering a dynamic environment for investors and enthusiasts alike. By bridging the gap between traditional finance and the burgeoning world of DeFi, FluidTokens continues to lead the charge towards a more inclusive and accessible financial future.

As the leading ecosystem on both the Bitcoin and Cardano blockchains, FluidTokens is dedicated to meeting the evolving needs of the crypto community. Our platform offers a trustless and secure environment for users to access a wide array of non-custodial DeFi services, driven by community feedback and commitment to innovation.

“We’re proud to announce that we have created the first 100% permissionless lending protocol that supports Runes and Ordinals along with all the major BTC wallets. The lending protocol doesn’t need any centralised entity or layer 2 to function, thanks to our innovative BitWeave technology. We are currently working on several additional DeFi services that will run directly on Bitcoin Layer. We pride ourselves on usability of what we create and this DEX is proof of that. We’re basically giving you the experience of a Web2 exchange but permissionless,” says Matteo Coppola, CEO and Co-Founder of Fluid Tokens.

About FluidTokens

FluidTokens is the current leading ecosystem on Bitcoin and Cardano blockchains that leverages your assets to offer a world of innovative financial services. This open, trustless and secure ecosystem offers different non-custodial DeFi services for any crypto user, created following the community needs and feedback. FluidTokens is community-centric, prioritising a great user experience – listening to the community suggestions – and allowing everyone to be an active member. As the protocols are non-custodial, any user can be both a liquidity provider and a borrower! The official FluidDAO has been legally established in Switzerland, and the $FLDT token is live on MEXC and Minswap.

For more visit: https://fluidtokens.com/

Aleph Zero Launches Alephoria: Exciting Airdrops, Tournaments, and Rewards Await Users 4037

Alephoria invites web3 users to the Aleph Zero ecosystem with an interactive initiative of campaigns as projects launch

Aleph Zero–the privacy-oriented layer 1 blockchain–is gearing up for a surge of new users with its Alephoria campaign. Newcomers can look forward to airdrops and other promotional activities as they join the expanding ecosystem.

Dozens of teams are actively developing groundbreaking solutions on Aleph Zero, spanning DeFi, web3 identity, liquid staking, RWA tokenization, content creation, and gaming, among other areas. At the heart of this innovation is Aleph Zero–a blazingly-fast blockchain that enables all these advancements through its modular and compliant approach to ZK privacy.

The network offers instant transaction finally with subsecond speeds, powered by AlephBFT, its proprietary consensus mechanism that integrates Directed Acyclic Graph (DAG) technology with Proof of Stake. Moreover, its data confidentiality engine skillfully balances transparency with data protection, aligning with AML/CFT regulations. These fundamental features make Aleph Zero an attractive platform for users, developers, enterprises and regulators worldwide.

Adding new utility to AZERO, the native coin

AZERO, the native coin of the Aleph Zero ecosystem, facilitates leading web3 developers in crafting new products and generating sustainable value, and unlocks a world of benefits for its holders through unique campaigns and rewards.

Staking AZERO offers users the opportunity to earn rewards directly in AZERO coins for participating in the network. For a quick start to staking, users can refer to the concise guide available now.

Additionally, AZERO serves as users’ gateway to Alephoria, offering them the chance to participate in significant ecosystem-wide airdrop campaigns from various projects.

Common Drops–the first major airdrop campaign

Launching alongside Common AMM—the first mainnet release from Aleph Zero’s DeFi platform, Common—the Common Staking Drops campaign is set to begin on May 21st. Common AMM, a Uniswap-like decentralized exchange, offers a user-friendly trading experience, built-in bridging between Aleph Zero and Ethereum, and incentives for users.

The campaign will reward participants who are active in staking, both before and throughout the duration of the campaign, with the rewards increasing the longer one participates, based on the daily average of their stake during each round.

Simultaneously, Common LP Drops will start rewarding users engaged in liquidity farming. These Drops are non-transferable initially but will be redeemable for CMN—the platform’s token—once it launches, aligning with Common’s vision of enhancing trading efficiency and confidentiality across its multi-chain DeFi suite.

Experience Alephoria

The ecosystem is rapidly expanding–and Alephoria is your key to getting the most out of it. A flurry of fresh Alephoria campaigns are either active–or lining up to launch in the near future. These include:

  • DRKVRS–a Web3 multiplayer action RPG game with innovative mechanics, set in a dystopian and brutalist world. Users ca sign up for their presale whitelist at TRANSRAAD DAO.
  • Abax–a unique fair lending protocol. The Stakedrop where stakers have already reserved $4M ABAX–or 20% of the tokens allocated for the first phase of the public contribution is in the last stages.
  • Upcade–a web3 gaming hub powered by AZERO. Users can participate in the Block Spector Tournament–an FPP game tournament with 70,000 AZERO rewards pool.
  • Kintsu–a liquid staking protocol. The Testnet implementation is already live while the OG roles can be already obtained by early users, leading to potential airdrops.
  • The Aleph Zero x Galxe Takeover–Users are invited to know the Aleph Zero ecosystem through on-chain questing and potentially win additional rewards.
  • The Commoners–Users can get a unique NFT from The Commoners collection for AZERO holders.

Go to alephoria.com to learn more about the initiatives!

About Aleph Zero

Aleph Zero is a layer 1 blockchain engineered for speed, data confidentiality, and ease of development. It achieves efficiencies akin to conventional web2 systems, upholds rigorous standards for data protection via ZKP and MPC, and offers a comprehensive toolset for WASM-based web3 development in Rust. Aleph Zero’s versatility is highlighted by over 40 use cases being actively developed, showcasing its adaptability across various sectors and applications. These use cases are part of an engaged community and growing ecosystem of web3 applications that are supported by Aleph Zero programs.

ShibaSwap Comes Home: Decentralized Exchange ShibaSwap Ports to Shibarium, Unleashing the Power of Community 4372

SHIB, a world-leading ecosystem of decentralized finance (DeFi) cryptocurrencies that has gained popularity among millions of holders worldwide, today announced that it has ported its decentralized exchange ShibaSwap to the Shibarium blockchain. The DEX will now be usable on both Ethereum and Shibarium. The move is the defining upgrade for ShibaSwap, empowering creators, fostering connections, and driving innovation on Shibarium.

ShibaSwap, powered by Shibarium, will offer a variety of new decentralized exchange and decentralized app (Dapp) utilities, including:

  • A brand new and enhanced dashboard and improved user processes (add/withdraw liquidity, staking, trend analysis, and more)
  • Discovery charts for new and trending tokens to help traders navigate the market’s volatility and craziness
  • The onboarding of new tokens onto ShibaSwap

The community is encouraged to leverage ShibaSwap on Shibarium. Part of the transaction fees portion will be utilized to enhance the value of the LPs used in the swap transaction. This results in an increase in the value of the LP tokens for users, ultimately benefiting the community of yield farmers as a whole.

“The new ShibaSwap empowers DEFI innovators looking for the next hit on Shibarium to find, swap, and interact with community tokens in an entirely new way! It is the redesigned beating heart of a freshly forked Shibarium, where community tokens can flourish. We invite the community to try our new swap and invite current Shibarium tokens to port over to our swap with ease. Finally, rest assured, this new UX is still an early Shibaswap version, with more updates in the pipeline for the product,” said Shiba Inu Lead Developer known as Shytoshi Kusama.

Focusing on facilitating high-speed transactions with minimal gas fees and transforming the user experience in the blockchain space, Shibarium is built on the community-first and environment-friendly consensus mechanism. Anyone can build cost-effective protocols on Shibarium, expanding the reach and potential of the ecosystem while enriching the overall user experience. Shibarium also supports the other growing segments of the Shiba Inu Ecosystem, including the $SHIB and $LEASH tokens, SHEboshis DN-404 tokens, SHIB The Metaverse, the ShibaSwap DEX, and the Shiba Eternity game.

About SHIB

SHIB is a world-leading ecosystem of decentralized finance (DeFi) cryptocurrencies that has gained popularity among millions of holders worldwide. It has 3.9 million X (formerly Twitter) followers and is frequently ranked as the second-most searched crypto project by Google. Its ecosystem of tokens include $SHIB, $LEASH, and $BONE, plus native SHIBOSHIs and SHEboshi NFTs. SHIB.io utilizes the Shib Ecosystem to power quality technologies including SHIB:The Metaverse and Shibarium, the Layer 2 blockchain providing a solid foundation, scalability, security, and innovation for a decentralized world.

To learn more about SHIB, please visit the official website: https://www.shib.io.

Anchorage Digital Adds Support for Native DYDX Staking 4886

Institutional crypto platform Anchorage Digital has announced support for native DYDX staking. Now, institutions can stake DYDX from safe and secure custody at Anchorage Digital and earn staking rewards distributed by the protocol in USDC.

As home to the only federally chartered digital asset bank, Anchorage Digital provides crypto custody, staking, and other services for some of the top names in traditional and decentralized finance. As the partner of choice for crypto innovators, Anchorage Digital has supported ethDYDX custody since mainnet launch in August 2021 and native DYDX custody since the launch of the dYdX Chain in Q4 last year. The expansion into staking support marks a major step forward in advancing safe and secure institutional participation in the dYdX ecosystem.

“For many institutions, custody is just the start. Increasingly, institutions want to engage in staking, earn rewards, and contribute to the long-term scaling of innovative networks like dYdX. By adding staking support for its native token, DYDX, Anchorage Digital is proud to help unlock a new era of institutional participation in the dYdX ecosystem.” — Nathan McCauley, CEO and Co-Founder of Anchorage Digital

Anchorage Digital supports hundreds of top assets, which are selected on the basis of institutional demand and must meet rigorous quality and safety standards. Clients can easily stake DYDX to earn staking rewards, with both the underlying assets (DYDX tokens) and staking rewards (USDC tokens) held in safe and secure custody on the Anchorage Digital platform.

“Anchorage Digital’s integration of native DYDX staking initiates a new era of institutional engagement with dYdX. Staking involves more than just the accumulation of USDC rewards; it is a proactive effort to enhance the growth and sustainability of the dYdX ecosystem. This collaboration provides best in class custody solutions and boosts the attractiveness of the protocol.” — Charles d’Haussy, CEO of dYdX Foundation

The dYdX Chain is the world’s leading DeFi protocol focusing on perpetual futures, fully decentralized and community-governed. It distributes 100% of protocol fees to DYDX stakers for bolstering the dYdX Chain’s security. Since its launch six months ago, the dYdX Chain has generated over $136 billion in cumulative trading volume and has distributed over $23 million in USDC as staking rewards to nearly 20,000 stakers, with a current annual return rate of 18% as of May 13, 2024, according to Mintscan. The integration of Anchorage Digital’s staking support for native DYDX enhances institutional interest through Anchorage’s secure and regulated custodial services. This partnership provides a compliant staking solution for DYDX token holders and supports institutional adoption, contributing to the ecosystem’s growth.

About Anchorage Digital

Anchorage Digital is a crypto platform that enables institutions to participate in digital assets through custody, staking, trading, governance, settlement, and the industry’s leading security infrastructure. Home to Anchorage Digital Bank N.A., the only federally chartered crypto bank in the U.S., Anchorage Digital also serves institutions through Anchorage Digital Singapore, Porto by Anchorage Digital, and other offerings. The company is funded by leading institutions including Andreessen Horowitz, GIC, Goldman Sachs, KKR, and Visa, with its Series D valuation over $3 billion. Founded in 2017 in San Francisco, California, Anchorage Digital has offices in New York, New York; Porto, Portugal; Singapore; and Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Learn more at anchorage.com, on X @Anchorage, and on LinkedIn.

About the dYdX Foundation

The dYdX Foundation’s purpose is to support and grow the dYdX protocol ecosystem by enabling communities, developers, and decentralized governance.

The dYdX Chain software is open-source software to be used or implemented by any party in accordance with the applicable license. At no time should the dYdX Chain or its software be deemed to be a product or service provided or made available in any way by the dYdX Foundation. Interactions with the dYdX Chain software or any implementation thereof are permissionless and disintermediated, subject to the terms of the applicable licenses and code. Users who interact with the dYdX Chain software (or any implementations thereof) will not be interacting with the dYdX Foundation in any way whatsoever.